Angus begins to rebuild after tornado

The tiny town of Angus, in Essa Township is pulling together. Residents have been brought together by disaster — and dire need. A powerful tornado ripped through a neighbourhood Tuesday, destroying nearly 100 homes. But beginning this morning — residents worked together to start to rebuild their homes, and their lives.The residents of Angus are lucky that this was the only result of an atmospheric temper tantrum tossed upon their neighbourhood. No deaths. No serious injuries. Just some clean up. A lot, of clean up.Constable Kelly Daniels, OPP: “We’ve estimated between 80 and 100 because there’s varying levels of damage at this point. But we’re definitely 300 residents for the community that were affected.”Cynthia Ross, Essa Township Fire Chief: “I think it was the right time of day. People weren’t asleep. Young children were at school or out doing things. And people were up. And people were able to be aware or what’s going on.”Yet, at the time — as this EF-2 funnel cloud dropped from the sky, some people didn’t take it seriously:Others — did.“A bunch of debris started hitting the house and the car and it was really loud bangs. Stuff hitting the windows and that.”That debris is scattered across a two block area, near the centre of town. The main concern now — to determine which homes are structurally safe — and which are not.Residents gathered at the local arena to get an update on their homes — and some — came away frustrated:“They don’t have answers on when we can get back in the house. They don’t have answers on anything. It’s basically put your name on a list. If you have pets that you have to get, essentials, medication and they’ll come to us first.”“All we want to know is when can we enter the houses. How do we know they’re secure?”For now — as the homes are evaluated and damaged assessed in the town — a state of emergency remains.Damage estimates have already run into the millions of dollars, and the neighbourhood has been officially declared a disaster zone by Essa Township, clearing the way for provincial assistance to rebuild. Officials say no one had to use an emergency shelter set up last night — all 300 residents, had a place to stay. But the thing that everyone seems to be talking about for the moment, is the fact that only three minor injuries were reported, in a disaster that essentially wiped out an entire neighbourhood.

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